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 Post subject: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 09 Apr 2014, 22:00 
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So after acquiring about 15 HD-DVD titles from a guy selling a DVL-700 in a package deal, I'm thinking of getting an HD-DVD player finally. Question is, which to get?

I do have an Xbox 360, so the HD-DVD add-on is an option.

Also, there's this guy selling a "NIB" Venturer HD-DVD player (he says it's a rebadged Toshiba A3) . . .

http://philadelphia.craigslist.org/ele/4395147004.html

Either of these sound like a viable option in the long run?
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 09 Apr 2014, 22:58 
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The Venturer was indeed a rebadged A3 that was sold at Wal-Mart. A few things for you to think about. The player is NIB so it might need some firmware updates which can be found but it will take some detective work. The A3 was limited to 1080i so if that bugs you you will need to look at an A30/35 or an XA2. I still watch many of my HD DVDs and I feel that some, such as Pan's Labyrinth, are the best presentation available, including Blu-ray. It seems like a relatively good price to start yet another "dead" collection. :wtf: ;) :crazy: :lol:
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 10 Apr 2014, 09:02 
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I would go for a Toshiba hd-a1 or Hd-XA1 . You can use the internal decoder for True HD when updated to FW 4.0
Solid build quality.... Running FW 4.0 and it plays about everything.
I owned the European ep-35, ep-10, e1 EP-30... they all froze during playback.
One reminder ... soms combo discs freeze halfway trough the movie at the point of layer change. Most work trouble free on my A1 and XA-1
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 10 Apr 2014, 10:17 
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I would not touch anything other than the xa1\xa2\xe1 the build quality of these players is top notch.The ep10/ep35 etc all look and feel like lightweight Chinese knock-offs.I've owned HD-DVD from day of release in the UK.Don't worry too much about so called disc rot.Discs freezing etc is nothing new it happened right from the beginning not sure how HD-DVD got a reputation for being more reliable than Bluray just not true.Until i updated to firmware 4.0 titles such as The Hitcher, Smoking aces,Norbit etc all froze or in some cases i got messages saying this is not a DVD.None of these titles are on the so called Warner rotters list being from universal and or paramount good luck.
  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 10 Apr 2014, 15:44 
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1080i only isn't a huge deal to me since my Sony WEGA KV-40XBR800 tops out at 1080i. The Venturer/A3 can output 1080i through component connects correct (the WEGA only has one HDCP compliant DVI input and my blu-ray is plugged into that)? Or was HDCP already forced by the time that model came around?
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 10 Apr 2014, 23:21 
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Some HD-DVDs will force 480P output if you use component video.
I remember Resident Evil doing that at least (don't ask which part... I forgot).
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 12 Apr 2014, 00:47 
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Go for the Xbox HD DVD people have issues with Warner Brother discs that do not exist using the Xbox add on. Plus they are really cheap.
I have a toshiba HD DVD player and it is so slow to start. Takes about 3 minutes to boot up.
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 12 Apr 2014, 06:29 
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I like my Toshiba HD DVD player. I own the EP 10 I believe or EP 35 I forgot now.

But what I wanted to say is:

My HD DVD player does an absolutely superb job upscaling DVD content. Also, and I have read this in a magazine too,
audio CDs sound extremely well on those players if you use the analogue cinch output. Wow. It sounds much better than
my two other Blu Ray players and the upscaling job on those DVD Video is just amazing.

So I use my HD DVD player a lot for playing Audio CDs and watching upscaled DVDs on my beamer/projector. I can really recommend
it for that purpose.
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 12 Apr 2014, 09:22 
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veddermandan wrote:
Go for the Xbox HD DVD people have issues with Warner Brother discs that do not exist using the Xbox add on. Plus they are really cheap.
I have a toshiba HD DVD player and it is so slow to start. Takes about 3 minutes to boot up.


I've been thinking about buying an x-box with add-on...
I read diff. things online...
One says it isn't that great , the other claims it to be an all playing unit.
They are dead cheap to find that is for sure

Does it play The 2 lethal weapon discs? I've been really trying that one title on any machine available... it drives me :crazy:
If I can not get those LW discs to work they are going to end up in the trash :shh:
I don't keep a movie that I can't enjoy watching flawlessly
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 12 Apr 2014, 17:19 
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confederate wrote:
I like my Toshiba HD DVD player. I own the EP 10 I believe or EP 35 I forgot now.

But what I wanted to say is:

My HD DVD player does an absolutely superb job upscaling DVD content. Also, and I have read this in a magazine too,
audio CDs sound extremely well on those players if you use the analogue cinch output. Wow. It sounds much better than
my two other Blu Ray players and the upscaling job on those DVD Video is just amazing.

So I use my HD DVD player a lot for playing Audio CDs and watching upscaled DVDs on my beamer/projector. I can really recommend
it for that purpose.


Excellent points confederate. If you have a newer budget BD player a HD DVD player will definitely outshine it for CDs and up-scaling DVD.
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 14 Apr 2014, 05:55 
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A35 uses abt2015 chip for video processing which is really good. I dont know what a30 and a35 has for dacs but xa2 uses wolfson 24/96khz which is very good. Toshiba boards are very similar all the way from a2 to xa2. I can imagine they all use the same dacs. The power section is not much to write home about comparing to high end cd players but probably better than most newer bd players.

Lg bh200 is also a killer machine. It was one of the three bd/hddvd combo players ever produced. I ve owned every single kne of them. I still use one in my setup. It has an unadvertised marvel qdeo chip which beats all hddvd and most bd players. It is a slow bd player comparing to newer ones (all hd dvd players are slow) but it is a profile 2.0 (lacks 3d) player with the final fw.
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 14 Apr 2014, 23:52 
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substance wrote:
A35 uses abt2015 chip for video processing which is really good. I dont know what a30 and a35 has for dacs but xa2 uses wolfson 24/96khz which is very good. Toshiba boards are very similar all the way from a2 to xa2. I can imagine they all use the same dacs. The power section is not much to write home about comparing to high end cd players but probably better than most newer bd players.

Lg bh200 is also a killer machine. It was one of the three bd/hddvd combo players ever produced. I ve owned every single kne of them. I still use one in my setup. It has an unadvertised marvel qdeo chip which beats all hddvd and most bd players. It is a slow bd player comparing to newer ones (all hd dvd players are slow) but it is a profile 2.0 (lacks 3d) player with the final fw.


Yes it is. :thumbup: I recall that the Samsung BD-UP5000 was no slouch either and according to the folks on AVS it even got a firmware upgrade in April. :shock:
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 15 Apr 2014, 02:22 
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I owned the up5000 as well. That one has hqv reon. It works like coffee grinder with lots of mechanical noise. Toshiba a35 and samsung up5000 has the sharpest picture. Toshiba xa2 and bh200 has more natural but a bit softer image. Xa2 clones onkyo hd805 and integra dhs(i own both) are a bit softer via different firmware but can be converted to toshiba xa2.
I would rank xa2(and its clones) and bh200 as best hd players. A35 and up5000 would be second. Best reader is the xbox add on drive. It reads most rotted disc but picture isnt that good and no lossless audio.
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 17 Apr 2014, 18:53 
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Good day elahrairrah,

The rest of the guys that have replied, have covered most if not all of software issues, and hardware differences.

I have the TOSHIBA X A2 and I am totally impressed with the build and Picture Quality, to be honest the only niggle I have with this player is to do with the fact that the front draw cover is clunky.

One would have thought that Toshiba would have built this as a one drawer with an airtight seal behind the drawer to aim silent operation.

Aside from the above the player is great and I am being picky that's all.

Kind Regards

:thumbup: :D
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 27 Jun 2016, 02:02 
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Welp, finally decided to take the plunge.

Found a guy selling a Toshiba HD-XA2 with a bunch of discs (including the Harry Potter "chest" box set) for just $10 on Craigslist.

Hooked it up via component (since my WEGA doesn't do 1080p, it only has one HDMI input and component tops out at 1080i anyway) and 6-channel output to my receiver. Doesn't look like HDCP isn't forced on this one yet (or I haven't come across a disc that forces it?) Impressed by the sound quite a bit. Popped in Hot Fuzz on HD-DVD and I wasn't expecting that movie to sound that good.

Tried several other HD-DVDs (Superman II: The Donner Cut, The Bourne Identity, 300), all played without issue thankfully.

You are right about the tray cover, benmbe. The spring that pulls it closed is a bit too tight so the tray motor doesn't produce enough torque to push it open!

All in all, well worth the $10 risk.

Now, let's see if I can find that French import of John Carpenter's The Fog on HD-DVD . . .
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 27 Jun 2016, 11:33 
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elahrairrah wrote:
Welp, finally decided to take the plunge.

All in all, well worth the $10 risk.


I have never felt the urge to go down the HD-DVD road but an offer like that..... nice one.

Hope the discs continue to be good ones with no issues, a $10 "plunge" for a working player with discs has got to be a happy bag for you..... enjoy!!! :thumbup:
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 02 Jul 2016, 16:34 
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So far I'm enjoying it. Continuing to knock wood that I haven't come across any "rotten" discs yet.
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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 04 Jul 2016, 02:23 
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elahrairrah wrote:
So far I'm enjoying it. Continuing to knock wood that I haven't come across any "rotten" discs yet.


I checked my "Batman Begins" HD DVD last year and it played well.

Wanted to watch it again last night and... it never managed to change layer after playing ~79min. => dreaded error code on screen.
My only solution was to go and download a BluRay rip online.

What a shame.

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 Post subject: Re: Thinking of taking the HD-DVD plunge
PostPosted: 07 Jul 2016, 16:00 
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That sucks Julien!

So far so good for the HD-XA2 though :knocks wood again:

Watched Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and Hot Fuzz all the way through without any problems recently.

I'll give Batman Begins a shot and see what happens.
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